The&Partnership launched a campaign for The Wall Street Journal presenting the paper as “The Face of Real News.”
That phrase, of course, has a host of implications. President Trump has repeatedly attempted to discredit negative coverage of his administration with allegations that such reports are “fake news.” During a February news conference, Trump berated a CNN reporter with the line and refused to take a question from the outlet, laughably turning to Breitbart, a publication much more deserving of that description, for the next question. While the phrase “fake news” originally referenced deliberately spread misinformation the term has recently been corrupted to the point of losing much of its initial meaning.
The Wall Street Journal has been careful to distance itself from Trump’s attacks on the media, to the degree that some have criticized the publication for being too soft on the president. This campaign appears to be an effort to reassure readers of all political leanings of the paper’s dedication to finding the truth.
The campaign gets into the specifics of all the hard work that goes into a given piece of investigative journalism, as told by the reporter in question and brought to life with simple animation. One such effort, for example shines a light on the difficulties investigative journalist John Carreyrou faced to bring his investigation of health tech company Theranos to light. Another follows mergers and acquisitions reporter Dana Mattioli, who broke eight of the ten biggest deals of the year in 2016. Future efforts will continue in the same format.
“The Face of Real News” arrives on the heels of a recent New York Times campaign from Droga5 which made its broadcast debut during the Oscars and dealt with themes around the “The Truth,” which it described as both “hard to find” and “more important now than ever.” That effort followed a spot W+K created for The Atlantic starring Michael K. Williams, which called on viewers to “Question Your Answers.” Clearly, there’s a common theme here.
“You can click on anything on the internet and it looks like news, but when you hear the story of how journalists actually get their stories firsthand from them it really is quite compelling and makes you respect what it takes to get real news,” The&Partnership North American CCO Wil Boudreau told Adweek, who adds that the campaign aims to demonstrate the “spectrum of the human experience behind what it’s like to be a professional journalist.”